Sheets Search

Some people spend their free time dreaming of vacations and planning their futures, I spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about sheets. My patterned bed sheets had finally had enough. They’d given up, they’d ripped, they’d torn, they’d stained. It was the end. They knew it. Malary knew it. I was in denial, but deep down, I still knew it. What I could not find though was the perfect sheets for my bed! Bring on the bloodhounds, because this was about to get serious. I needed new sheets and I was going to find some good ones. You can see my old sheets here, both before and after I got my quilt. They were part of this collection from the Target Threshold line about a year ago. They’ve since discontinued the pattern, but the new patterns are pretty cute! I love that blue geo.

 

 

I was tempted to go with one of the new patterns from the same line, but they just weren’t right. Plus, I’d really only had my sheets from this line for one year and they’d already ripped along a couple seams and they were worn and stained on the fitted sheet where I slept. Not a gross, unidentifiable stain or anything. But there was kind of an outline of my body, probably from sweat and oil and the fact that I sleep in exactly the same place every night. The sheets also felt different in this spot. They pilled a little bit and were not as crisp feeling as the rest of the sheets. You couldn’t tell any of this unless you were actively making the bed up, so it wasn’t overt in the least, but I knew about it. Is this too much information? I just wanted y’all to be totally informed about the quality of these sheets. My verdict? They did not last as long as I’d expected. Nosiree!

 

My problem when I’m looking for things for my home is my vivid imagination. Usually, before I even start searching, I know exactly what the item I want looks like. Vividly, from the scale of the pattern, to the exact shade (in this case) of green. Obviously, this makes things tricky as I don’t have a line of sheets I’ve designed, and thus cannot pluck my imagined sheet set from my imagination and wrap them over my bed. Maybe one day. But now? I am stuck on the search and have to find a compromise.

 

West Elm Duvet and Quilt | Land of Laurel

 

I think that there are a range of compromises. When anyone is looking to buy anything, I think it is best to go in with a set of guidelines, a list of must haves. These are the things you cannot, will not, compromise on. For my search for the perfect sheets my must have list looked like this:

  • Organic I believe in organic cotton, because I am going to sleep on these sheets for 8+ hours every night for as long as they’ll last, and I simply do not want any residue of pesticides that close to my skin for that length of time. If I could, every piece of linen or clothing item I bought would be organic and colored with natural dyes. Since this is not feasible (budget, style, etc) for me at this point in my life, I have to pick and choose. For me, sheets are a priority and organic sheets are easy to find!
  • Patterned, some people love the look of simple, clean, all white bedding with the only accent or color coming from a pillow or throw blanket, but not me! I love pattern and color and mixing the two. Since my bedding is made up of a busy, multi-colored, large scale patterned duvet and euros; a dark red quilt with simple square stitching; simple, white standard shams; and gold sequined throw pillows, I wanted to balance the solids with another pattern. The patterning, however, needed to be dual color and pretty small scaled in order to not compete with the rest of the fabrics.
  • Queen-sized, there are always some concessions to be made, but for sheets, size is not one of them!
  • 50% or more white in the patterning, so much of my bedding is saturated in color, there is only mild contrast with my dark headboard and furnishings. I wanted my sheets to help lighten the bedding and room.
  • Green, I knew exactly what shade of green I wanted my sheets to be. That perfect green- somewhere between yellow, lime, and split pea soup- was the same green found in the greenery in my floral my duvet cover.

 

Little did I know, but in this situation, one of my “must” haves simply had to drop out. The sheets I found, though, still take the cake! Here are several I seriously considered, just in case any of you are on the hunt for sheets!

 

  1. The first sheets I looked at were again from the Target Threshold Organic Sheet Set   line. But, the plain white was the only one that would really work with the rest of my bedding and that felt too boring to me. Plus, for the reasons described above, I was a little skeptical of their quality.

 

Target Threshold Organic Sheet Set | Land of Laurel
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2. I fell pretty hard for these Pottery Barn Marlo Organic Sheets when I first saw them over a year ago. The pattern is wonderful and small enough in scale to not compete with most other patterns. Having grown up in a Spanish style home, the Spanish/Moroccan influence in the pattern appeals to me. The dual-color palette was precisely what I was looking for, but it wasn’t green and I worried the pattern was still too large against my floral duvet cover. Still, in another world, I’d go for these in a heartbeat!

 

Pottery Barn Marlo Organic Sheets | Land of Laurel
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3. I knew Coyuchi organic cotton sheets were the height of luxury. West Elm even sells a sheet set from their line! These Sand Dollar Printed Sheets were the right scale and they even came in green, but the sand dollars don’t really fit in with my floral bedspread and the green wasn’t the exact right shade I wanted. Plus the $298.00 price tag for the queen sized set threw me a bit. That was way over my limited budget. I did love many of the other sheets Coyuchi sells though. Each and every single one is organic!

Coyuchi San Dollar Sheet Set | Land of Laurel
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4. My search continued and after looking at many more patterned sheets, I looked for something more simple and found these Organic Mod Stripe Sheets at West Elm. I focused on the more neutral Belgian Flax color at first, before realizing I much preferred the Light Pool color. The dual-color pattern was precisely 50% white, like I was looking for and it was simple and small enough in scale to not compete with my duvet. But they did not come in any shade of green! The horizontal striping was interesting since sheets tend to come in vertical stripes.

 

West Elm Mod Stripe Sheets | Land of Laurel
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5. I loved these Loomis Stripe Organic Sheets from Pottery Barn on first sight. The two colored stripe provided interest and allowed most of the sheet to be white. They contained the perfect shade of green I was so desperately searching for, but also a navy. I adored them, but did I really want to add another color to my already colorful room?

 

Pottery Barn Loomis Stripe Sheets | Land of Laurel

 

Can you guess which of the five I ended up springing for? Or which point I had concede on?

 

 

Prices lowered on one of the sets and the sale helped me snag those sheets for $69. Not cheap, but not as expensive as they could have gone for. As soon as they arrived at my door, I washed and dried them, and threw them on my bed. Instantly cute! Instantly more finished. Instantly tied in with all the other color!

 

Bedroom Sheets | Land of Laurel

 

Yup, that’s right! I went with the unexpected and choose the Organic Mod Stripe Sheets from West Elm. Blue, not green! A real curve ball (from my perspective at least!). It was actually a bit of a gamble, because I hoped (but wasn’t sure) that the “Light Pool” color of the sheets was the same aqua color in the little blue flowers on my duvet and euros. When the sheets arrived I heaved a big sigh of relief, they were a match!

 

New Sheets | Land of Laurel

 

That’s one of the best things about this duvet, it works in a few hues from several different colors (red, green, pink, aqua), allowing it to coordinate with nearly everything. It’s really very fortunate and makes me love the modern floral even more! You might also note the flowers on my nightstand. They were a cute birthday gift from my friend Hannah, the vase I inherited from my Oma, but how perfectly do they go with my bedding! Same aqua! Same red! Same pink! Totally perfect. Sigh… it’s the little things in life that make me smile.

 

Bedroom Updates | Land of Laurel

 

So there you have it. A couple months search, some compromises, and a win-win situation. I love the sheets, they help tie everything (including the red quilt ) together. I finally feel like this year long hunt for bedding can come to a close. The new sheets and the switching out the standard shams from the red quilted ones back to my original white shams, make the red quilt feel far less out of place. Now everything coordinates and I can sleep easy. Whew.

 

Stripes with Florals | Land of Laurel

 

Plus, I’ve totally proved that stripes go with florals! Just match the colors and you’re golden. Hooray! Any one else looking for new sheets? Coordinating patterns? Maybe I should take my stripes/florals and apply it to fashion. That would be an outfit!

Flower Power

My new bedding arrived and is kicking it on my bed. That’s right. It’s here!! I spent a good, long time looking at this duvet cover on West Elm’s website before biting the bullet. Somethings I can buy on a whim, somethings I need to fully digest before I splurge. Bedding in my room would set the entire context for the space. It would be a huge design element. The design element in my room, actually. Because you walk into my room and stare straight at my bed, the linens covering said bed are the only thing you see. So not only did they need to make an impression, but they needed to strike the right balance between harmonizing with rest of my things and creating excitement. Because my walls are a warm, pale green I wanted to go darker. I feel like most blog pictures have white bedding and white walls and white curtains. That’s just not me. I love color, I love boldness, I love excitement!

 

I bought the plain white bedding I have on my bed currently from IKEA when I was in college. I thought it would be light, clean, easy to wash. Little did I know that I am no good at keeping white, white. The bedding stayed on my bed in my parents house while I lived in Boston. When I got home it was covered in stains. Thanks, family. After I lived with it for a few weeks, I realized it just made me feel like a slob. I drink a lot of tea and I drink a lot of tea in bed. I also spill a lot of tea on things. Tea stains on my white bedding? You betcha. It just had to go. It didn’t look terrible. In fact, no one could actually notice it. But I new it was there. I knew that the duvet cover faced the direction it did so that little stain was down against the sheets, I knew the throw at the end of the bed was so folded to hide the chocolate stain from that ice cream sundae I ate in bed. I can hide these things from others, but not myself, and I was over it.

 

Gold Sequin Throw Pillows | Land of Laurel

 

Having tried the whole white linens thing and had it fail for my personal lifestyle, I knew what my criteria for new bedding should look like. First, something dark in color. Second, something with pattern. I wanted something with green to go with my room and something that would mesh well with gold accents. In particular, I wanted something that had multiple shades of green, but incorporated a few other colors which would allow for more interest in the room. I don’t have any grey tones in my home, so it needed to be warm colors and not cool. My wooden headboard is pretty dark, so the bedding needed to be light enough to pop against the dark, wood tones. Lastly, I wanted to be excited about it! I wanted to look at my bed and think, “Wow!”

 

So after months of looking at the Garden Trellis bedding at West Elm, it went on sale, and I bit the bullet. I bought the duvet cover and three euro pillow cases. This bedding just fits all my categories. Dark enough to hide a tiny tea stain, but light enough to pop against my headboard. Colorful! The bedding uses three shades of green, so pretty much anything green I already had would it go with it. Plus, the bedding has liberal dashes of two different reds (my absolute favorite color!), bits of baby blue, and splashes of white. This allows me to branch out from my palette of greens with a good direction. I always recommend finding something to set the tone of a room — a painting, a scarf, bedding, a throw pillow– anything that allows you to pull colors from it and use it as a basis of color design. This bedding is my basis of design for this room. It’s exciting and fun and encourages me to bring in splashes of other colors. It’s red and green and doesn’t scream “Christmas!” that in and of itself is a small miracle! This bedding is backed by a really warm neutral tone that falls somewhere in between grey and brown. It might lean slightly more grey, but just barely. It is basically perfect and checked every item off my list. Plus, I kind of love the floral! It’s more feminine than I would normally go, but it’s kind of a spunky feminine with a sassy flair. It’s not your mother’s floral.

 

Garden Trellis Bedding | Land of Laurel

 

Isn’t it just smashing? I absolutely love it. I adore the splashes of red. I makes me what to incorporate more reds in the room. Yay! Now, I still need to get on and hang some real art on these walls and find some storage for my books, but It finally feels like I’m getting somewhere! Like this room is actually going places. Places I want to go! Did it take me six months? Yes. But who is counting? It’s the destination, not the journey right?

 

New Bedding | Land of Laurel

 

One other thing I did that was a little crazy? I bought the duvet cover in a king size. My bed is a queen. They still had queen size in stock when I ordered, but I decided to try something a little insane. My old white duvet didn’t cover the metal legs of the bed. Not that they were terrible or anything, but I wanted something longer. Something that would not only cover the metal legs of the bed frame I’m not crazy about. Plus, since my room is small, I take full advantage of that under-bed space for piles of random, unorganized crap storage. To take the photo above I had to move some of my things out from under the bed so it looked clean. In reality, there are things down there I don’t want to have to stuff into my closet every time someone comes to visit. So I did the unthinkable. I bought a king sized duvet for my queen bed. Which meant I also had to buy a new comforter. Oops. Look how it turned out, though! It’s perfect. It just barely touches the floor. It looks great. It hides all the things I have stored beneath the bed. You don’t even know they’re under there! It’s really fantastic. If you have similar under-bed storage issues, I highly recommend giving upsizing your comforter a try.

 

Garden Trellis Bedding | Land of Laurel

 

My room is starting to blossom! It’s making me excited and happy. This bedding is kicking my butt into gear. I’ve been brainstorming ideas on how to transform my room into a colorful garden oasis. The solution? Way more plants! I love how my parlor palm is sneaking its way into that shot above. Very jungle-y. My constant issue with book storage is, of course, still in the back of my mind. But, I’ve already made progress on #OperationNoMoreDecorativeLamps. Can’t wait to show you how that’s looking! Until then I’ll just keep staring at my bed like a love sick puppy, ok? Adding a little bit of flower power has totally spiced up this bedroom.

 

 

 

 

 

Bedding Basics

So when we left my bedroom a few days ago, we were at not terrible, but could use some improvement, no? The room was slowly climbing its way up the meh scale and I was fighting tooth and claw to bring it down off that scale and on to the glam/fabulous/happy/beautiful scale. The scale so exciting I couldn’t even pick an adjective. That scale. That’s the scale I wanted my bedroom on. I wanted to walk in my room and exclaim, “Oh my gosh! It’s so pretty/beautiful/fun/happy/ecstatic/glam/gold/colorful/rainbowsandunicorns!”

 

But before I get to that point, I have a little work cut out for me. Which, you know, I kind of love. So, whatever. Bring it!

 

This is where I was at when we left off. Sad, sad bedding, “decorative” lamps, my lovely trunk, my homemade wooden headboard, and failed experiments in hanging art from nails left over from the room’s previous resident. The whole thing was basically shouting, “Help us! Save us! Floop is a mad man! Help us! Save us! Floop is a mad man!” Except replace “Floop” with “Laurel.” And I’ll give you ten bucks if you know what that referenced. Just kidding. I don’t have any money to give away to the internet. It’s Spy Kids. That gem of a movie. Antonio Banderas at his finest. Yum. Yum. Yum… I’m sorry, was I supposed to be talking about my bedroom? Wait… I think I’m still on track… 😉

 

Bedroom Moved In | Land of Laurel

 

Look at that sad, sad bed, though. So sad, right? So, so so SAD. Makes you sad, just thinking about how sad that bed is? THAT’S HOW I FEEL TOO. What makes beds less sad? And maybe — if you get it right — even makes a bed happy? You know what would make it instantly better? An adorable tortoise shell kitty cat named Malary. And euro-size pillows. Both of them together you ask? I deliver.

 

Malary on the Trunk | Land of Laurel

 

The euros are from IKEA (I have an addiction and IKEA is only 15 minutes away, somebody save me!). I love that the euros give the bed some much needed height and boost the bedding into a snazzier realm, but that granny smith apple green? Nah uh. Not happening. I hate it! It’s similar in color to the lamps though, so I don’t think it looks terrible, I just want something in the bedding to coordinate with it too. For now though, they were on super-sale and it works. It’s a small change from the picture above, but it adds a lot, in my opinion. I’m all about the tiny tweaks!

 

The euros are IKEA’s down version and my goodness did they stink when I first bought them! Like a gross stink that smelled like dust and dead things and really, really old people and a non mildewy mildew. I washed them, dried them, and then hung them outside to get some sun and fresh air for a week, twice. Yes, that’s right, I washed them, dried them, and hung them outside for a week a second time. So basically I bought these pillows and then waited two and a half weeks before throwing them onto my bed. That is a form of torture for me. Having something so close, yet so stinky far. Plus euros are so soft to lean against, they make reading in bed ever so lovely!

 

If you don’t have euros (I’m talking to you, every single male out there), go buy some. Maybe not from IKEA, but buy some nice down euros because they make your bed look like it put on pants this morning. Which is good in the long run, since people are usually a bit weirded out by those who run around all day without any pants on. I mean, seriously, you do not want your bed to be that person inanimate object.

 

See what the cat does for the bed in the picture above though? Instantly adorable! Malary loves modeling for me, mice toys, and that bed. And the trunk too. It’s a good perch from which she can sit and stare at me. Not that she doesn’t already have about half a million places to sit while staring at things….

 

Malary at the Window | Land of Laurel

 

Such a fluffy kitty! I love her like the child I don’t plan on having for another ten years (Did you see that mom? Ten years! Just hold your horses, okay?). Moving on from my gorgeous fifteen year old cat, that I am mildly obsessed with and cuddle & spoon with all night long…

 

My room needs a bit more help in the bedding department. I used to buy bedding for model homes for a living so this is a concern I am quite accustomed to. The bedding can’t just be anything, though. It needs excitement and personality. You know what gives a space instant personality? Throw pillows, that’s what! Glorious, fantastic throw pillows. And guess what? Throw pillows are easy to find. Yay!

 

While strolling through Target — desperately attempting to not buy anything other than the socks I came for (yeah right, like that’s ever happened in the history of Target) —  I stumbled upon these gold sequin throw pillows and just about died! They’re gold! And sequined! Everything my bedazzling-obsessed thirteen year old self wanted in life! Plus, since I’m going for the gold and all, I knew they were basically required to come home with me. I bought only one at first (stupidly!), and went back the next week for another because the first was so lonely! Now they are sitting my bed, a pair of gorgeous twins, jazzing things up, and giving me the good ole “come hither” look that fits in just right in a bedroom. 😉 I always was a sucker for sequins!

 

Gold Sequin Throw Pillows | Land of Laurel

 

Doesn’t that elevate the space so much more? It’s all, “Helllooo! The party has arrived!” and I’m over here like, “I love you, gold sequin pillows! Stay with me for eternity! Never ever leave! Marry me and we can have gold, sequined babies!” We may or may not be having an affair. I may or may not want it to last forever.

 

The throw pillows make this bedding almost okay. But who wants to stop at “almost okay”? Not me! It is time for new bedding!!!! So desperately time. Luckily, my new duvet and euro covers came in the mail! They’re here and I’m going to tell you all the reasons I love them even more than the throw pillows (I’m such a cheater!) later next week. It’s so fantastically mind-blowingly beautiful. Did I mention I love it? I mean, there are still many things to do, but I have some good changes coming up. Like lamps that actually turn on. That would be nice, I think, yes?